Melissa J. Simon

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The blood–brain barrier (BBB) is a major obstacle for drug delivery to the brain. To seek for in vitro BBB models that are more accessible than animals for investigating drug transport across the BBB, we compared four in vitro cultured cell models: endothelial monoculture (bEnd3 cell line), coculture of bEnd3 and primary rat astrocytes (coculture),(More)
Apoptotic or necrotic cell death in the hippocampus is a major factor underlying the cognitive impairments following traumatic brain injury. In this study, we examined if traumatic mechanical injury would produce regional activation of calpain and caspase-3 in the in vitro hippocampus and studied how the mechanically induced activation of NR2A and NR2B(More)
Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) represent a promising nonviral platform for the delivery of therapeutic cargos to cells and tissues. However, these peptides are often nonspecific, and their mechanism of action is still a subject of debate, which hinders the design of new CPPs. The alternative to rational protein design is the combinatorial approach to(More)
Seed ingestion by frugivorous vertebrates commonly benefits plants by moving seeds to locations with fewer predators and pathogens than under the parent. For plants with high local population densities, however, movement from the parent plant is unlikely to result in 'escape' from predators and pathogens. Changes to seed condition caused by gut passage may(More)
Cell penetrating peptides (CPPs) have tremendous potential for use in gene and drug delivery applications. The selection of new CPPs with desired capabilities from randomized peptide libraries is challenging, since the CPP phenotype is a complex selection target. Here we report the discovery of an unusual new CPP from a randomized peptide library using a(More)
Astrocyte activation contributes to the brain's response to disease and injury. Activated astrocytes generate harmful radicals that exacerbate brain damage including nitric oxide, peroxides and superoxides. Furthermore, reactive astrocytes hinder regeneration of damaged neural circuits by secreting neuro-developmental inhibitors and glycosaminoglycans(More)
Although some studies have shown that the cell penetrating peptide (CPP) TAT can enter a variety of cell lines with high efficiency, others have observed little or no transduction in vivo or in vitro under conditions mimicking the in vivo environment. The mechanisms underlying TAT-mediated transduction have been investigated in cell lines, but not in(More)
There is a great need for the development of vehicles capable of delivering therapeutic cargoes across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and into brain cells. Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs), such as TAT, present one such solution, and have been used successfully in vivo to deliver neuroprotective cargoes to the brain in models of stroke and seizure. However,(More)